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Photobook Review | Guy Bourdin Polaroids

Do you like photography books? We hope so!

From time to time, we will review photo books. The purpose is not to do a deep analyze as you can easily find many long reviews on the web.

We just want to share our tastes with you especially when the book contains an interesting topic, good design and excellent print quality.

New retina displays offer an incredible image quality on the iPad and other devices, but what about the pleasure of touching the paper and smelling the ink?

In a world where a constant flow of images overwhelms us, and when you cannot stop looking at your cell phone, just take a break.

Sit in your sofa, grab a book and quietly enjoy the photographs. Take your time, breath, feel, yes just feel..


Today, we present “Guy Bourdin Polaroids”, published in 2009 by Editions Xavier Barral, an excellent french publisher.

This small sized book gathering erotic Polaroids made by Guy Bourdin in the 70’s is a concentrate of refinement.

98 mainly unpublished polaroids, 98 timeless images from one of the first fashion provocateurs whose singular way of seeing influenced contemporary photography, and continues to do so.

No text, just a foreword by Oliviero Toscani.

Printing is excellent. The slight spot varnish on the photographs and the minimalist layout reinforce the Polaroid sensation.

We have also appreciated the metallic cloth on hardcover which may evoke both fashion and film photography.

Beyond the charm that never fail to have these fragile small instant formats, we enter an emotional world blending sense of color, perfect framing and sensual elegance.

A fine tribute to this great photographer who, during his lifetime, flatly refused to exhibit or publish elsewhere than in the ephemeral pages of fashion magazines.


“Guy Bourdin Polaroids”, published by Editions Xavier Barral
170 × 250 mm
128 pages
Publisher’s website